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Ghostrider One Hardcover – November, 1993


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 439 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; First Edition edition (November 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671753231
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671753238
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 6.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,102,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This vivid paean to the American fighting man in Vietnam engages all the reader's senses: one can practically see the expertly choreographed catapult launches from an aircraft carrier, smell the stink of unwashed bodies saving precious water during a siege and feel the smashing jolt of a parachute opening after ejection from a ruined airplane. Commander Jim Hogan, an experienced Navy pilot, is suddenly thrust into command as the leader of the Ghostriders, a squadron of intrepid A-4 aircraft. Hogan, his F-4 counterpart Commander Chris Scott, their buddy Marine Corps Major Dick Averitt and Marine Sergeant Major Gorton experience the blood, terror and lethal beauty of the siege of Khe Sanh, a historic moment in the Vietnam War captured by Carroll ( North S*A*R ) in a narrative that converges, as did the various forces involved, from many different directions. Himself a decorated Navy aviator, Carroll creates authentic dialogue rich in military slang; he has less success with his characters, all of whom are well-intentioned and most of whom are noble. But his straightforward plot, enlivened with carefully detailed descriptions and wry humor, will speak directly to those touched by combat experience in Vietnam.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

Authentic scenes of aerial combat, land battles, and shipboard support distinguish a businesslike novel about Navy and Marine fliers during Vietnam's Tet Offensive. Sensibly sticking to the serviceable prose of his previous North S.A.R. (1991), decorated Naval aviator Carroll provides plenty of the real-life detail that separates good war stories from technoglitz as he takes a small group of fliers through a few action-filled weeks in l968. Commander Jim Hogan is at the center of things, landing on the American aircraft carrier Shiloh for a hitch as executive officer of squadron of attack bombers just as his injured predecessor is flown out. Hogan discovers within hours that the squadron is badly demoralized after too many months under the command of an unimaginative, risk-averse careerist. His chance to fix things comes sooner than he is ready. The unsatisfactory commanding officer is slated for removal as soon as the Shiloh's top brass see that Hogan, a natural leader and flier, has the right stuff even if he hasn't had the requisite training time for the job. The squadron, grateful for a boss who understands aerial warfare better than bureaucratic battle (which he handles well enough to get his men out of a scrape), quickly shows the commander that they can bomb the daylights out of anything. While Hogan smoothes things over on the carrier, his old chum Major Dick Averitt, a Marine aviator, sticks to the ground at Khe Sanh, where he is supposed to observe and advise the ground troops. But the hitch at the front coincides with the greatest enemy assault of the war, and Averitt has to pick up a rifle and join the rest of the groundpounders to save the base. Just when things look darkest, the clouds start to clear and planes from the Shiloh show up. No hokum, no hyperbole, minimal politics, plenty of action. There's just no substitute for experience. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Bill Sterling on June 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If you've ever driven airplanes, and especially if you've done so 'in country' then I know how seldom you've been able to read a novel that comes even close to 'taking you back'. I've got some good news - an I got some bad news. The good news is that this particular book is but one of a trilogy. Beginning with "no place to hide" and ending with "North SAR" this book sets itsself between the two. It is incredible in both it's authenticity as well as the character development. The bad news is that Gerry died and there will be no more.
Thank you Sir.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 27, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This is a good story, with a brisk pace, authentic action, and realistic characters. As a literary work it is probably only worth 3 and 1/2 stars, at best. But I think its real importance is in how it reflects the military's view of the war through the Tet offensive. Its importance becomes clear about when you compare the overall tone of the book towards the Vietnam war with Stephen Coonts' book Flight of the Intruder. The aviators in that book hold a very different attitude towards the war.
From what I learned during the late 70's and early 80's while working with Naval Officers, both books are authentic, especially in the attitudes reflected by the military. For people who want to understand the Vietnam war and the effect of the civilian leadership on the military during this time, I strongly encourage you to read both books.
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Format: Hardcover
The author is a true expert and knows first-hand what he is writing about. Add to this his great communication skills, great pen and good humor from the heart - and you've got it!
Credentials of Lt.CDR Carroll are impeccable: he had flown 27+ types of military aircraft, had several tours of duty in Vie Nam; after the war was flying search-and-rescue. More importantly, people who knew him say that he had a big heart, trying to help whoever he could, regardless of what's the price. His description of events captivates you. You find action and history there, and possibly something more intangible - the soul of the people who put their lives on the line for their country. If you ever driven a plane, or contemplated doing it, been in the harm's way, or have a friend or a relative that was there - this book will touch your heart.
I cannot come close to showing how great this book is. You owe it to yourself to try it, that's all I can say!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a helicopter aircrewman aboard the USS Independence in 1977,I can appreciate the realism of navy life that Gerry Carroll brings to his books.He shares with us a "correctness" to procedures in the cockpit,the descriptions of shipboard attitudes,and the importance of the sailors onboard, who all have responsibilities crucial to not only keeping the aircraft aloft,but also keeping an aircraft carrier functional from the engine room to the catapults.Gerry and I were in HS-5,and we flew together many times.At first,I bought his Vietnam trilogy out of respect for his memory and his family.However,I quickly found myself completely engrossed with the stories and characters.GHOSTRIDER ONE is the second of the trilogy,and is nothing less than outstanding. I couldn't recommend it highly enough.
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By William L, Hitch on March 3, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As I was a Naval Aviator before, during, and after Viet Nam - I felt as if I were there. LOVED it!!
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